Thursday, July 30, 2009

Talk Soon

Well Ladies,

I am off again until next week. The weather forecast actually looks quite summery for a change so we are looking forward to enjoying the sun and heat.

I hope that I got back to all of the emails, etc. Please know that I am working on all of your Angel Wing requests and will get them out to you as soon as I can.

If anyone would like to request a pair or make a donation to the cause, please email me at lcreeves3@hotmail.com.

Thank you for your support on my rampage yesterday....*sigh*....I wish this whole thing didn't have to be more difficult than it already is. I just keep telling myself that we have been through the worst - the other stuff shouldn't count. (if only it were that easy!)

Here is a pic of the boys with Nicholas' Angel Bear - boy, do they love him.



Talk soon. Take care of each other.

Love,
Lea xo

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Emotional Release

Warning: the following post is an emotional release of sorts.

Before we lost Nicholas I would like to think that I was a logical and organized thinker. I was steadfast in my beliefs and not afraid to share them. I was, however, also able to see other people's perspective on different issues and "put the shoe on the other foot", so to speak. However, there are certain things since losing Nicholas that I cannot seem to understand about people. There are certain things that upset me so much, that make me shake my head in disbelief, that make me question my own choices and beliefs. I have always been one with a strong sense of self. I would not let anyone take advantage of me or my family. I feel like I am really starting to resent the fact that there are people in our lives (close people) who continue to try to distract us from our grief, from mourning our baby. As much as I try not to let that happen, it is extremely difficult to let these feelings go.

Why is it that there are some people out there who insist on making the very personal, devastating and intimate experience of losing our baby about them? Why is it that when we try desperately to communicate our feelings, to open up our hearts and souls that there seems to be no level of understanding or willingness to listen? It is frustrating, disappointing and disheartening, to say the least.

My husband and I are the first to admit that in the depths of our pain and our grief we have probably said or done some things that would not normally be a part of our character. There are many friends and family members who get that. Who get that we have been thrust into the most devastating time of our lives. They get that we are experiencing every parents worst nightmare and just trying to find our way. I guess what I'm saying is that I would expect a certain amount of leniency, forgiveness and tolerance when it comes to some of our behaviour the last several months. I do not excuse some of the out bursts or condone inappropriate behaviour in any way, but what I do expect is that we not be judged for the way we are experiencing our grief.

Are unconditional love and support too much to ask?

Frustration over trying to portray our feelings, only to be knocked down or have the conversation go in an entirely different direction is much too common. It is also very insulting and hurtful.

I have said it before and I will say it again, when the way we are feeling is not acknowledged or appreciated in any way, I feel like Nicholas' memory is being disrespected.... and aside from losing him in the first place, there is no hurt greater.

----------------------------------------

I would also like to acknowledge those who have been there for us, every dark and depressing step of the way. The phone calls just to 'check in'. The visits with ice cream...and wine. The numerous, silent visits over a cup of tea. The hugs, just because. The mention of our sweet Nicholas' name. The interest in his pictures. The acknowledgment of the day every month. The spending time with Nicholas' hurting brothers. The sensitivity. The love. The laughter and the tears. I hope they all know who they are. We wouldn't be where we are now without your determination and perseverance - thank you. I can guarantee that I would step up for all of you.....

xxx

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Angel Wings - Memorial Boutique


Hi There,

Firstly, thank you all for your unconditional support. As so many of us have said before, I don't where I would be if it wasn't for Nicholas' Touch and the many wonderful, beautiful people I have met here. I think that we are all so desperate for support, for understanding through this life altering journey... coming here is a way to get all of that and more. So thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

The Angel Wings have become a very popular item! It warms my heart to know that I can bring a little bit of light into someone else's day.

I have no intention of charging for the Wings, they are a true gift from my heart to yours. They are a gift to honor our beautiful babes. A simple reminder that we have our very own Guardian Angels watching over us.

Having said that, because the Wings have become so popular the supplies and postage are adding up. If anyone would like to contribute in any way to this heartfelt initiative, please let me know. I would love to be able to keep sending them out.... our babies deserve it.

Contact - lcreeves3@hotmail.com

Thank you all..... love always,
Lea
xo

The Mourner's Bill of Rights

The following is handout we received at our support group meeting the other night. It's called "The Mourner's Bill of Rights". Very interesting.

The Mourner's Bill of Rights
by Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D.


Though you should reach out to others as you do the work of mourning, you should not feel obligated to accept the unhelpful responses you may receive from some people. You are the one who is grieving, and as such, you have certain "rights" no one should try to take away from you.

The following list is intended both to empower you to heal and to decide how others can and cannot help. This is not to discourage you from reaching out to others for help, but rather to assist you in distinguishing useful responses from hurtful ones.

1. You have the right to experience your own unique grief.
No one else will grieve in exactly the same way you do. So, when you turn to others for help, don't allow them to tell what you should or should not be feeling.

2. You have the right to talk about your grief.
Talking about your grief will help you heal. Seek out others who will allow you to talk as much as you want, as often as you want, about your grief. If at times you don't feel like talking, you also have the right to be silent.

3. You have the right to feel a multitude of emotions.
Confusion, disorientation, fear, guilt and relief are just a few of the emotions you might feel as part of your grief journey. Others may try to tell you that feeling angry, for example, is wrong. Don't take these judgmental responses to heart. Instead, find listeners who will accept your feelings without condition.

4. You have the right to be tolerant of your physical and emotional limits.
Your feelings of loss and sadness will probably leave you feeling fatigued. Respect what your body and mind are telling you. Get daily rest. Eat balanced meals. And don't allow others to push you into doing things you don't feel ready to do.

5. You have the right to experience "griefbursts."
Sometimes, out of nowhere, a powerful surge of grief may overcome you. This can be frightening, but is normal and natural. Find someone who understands and will let you talk it out.

6. You have the right to make use of ritual.
The funeral ritual does more than acknowledge the death of someone loved. It helps provide you with the support of caring people. More importantly, the funeral is a way for you to mourn. If others tell you the funeral or other healing rituals such as these are silly or unnecessary, don't listen.

7. You have the right to embrace your spirituality.
If faith is a part of your life, express it in ways that seem appropriate to you. Allow yourself to be around people who understand and support your religious beliefs. If you feel angry at God, find someone to talk with
who won't be critical of your feelings of hurt and abandonment.

8. You have the right to search for meaning.
You may find yourself asking, "Why did he or she die? Why this way? Why now?" Some of your questions may have answers, but some may not. And watch out for the clich├ęd responses some people may give you. Comments like, "It was God's will" or "Think of what you have to be thankful for" are not helpful and you do
not have to accept them.

9. You have the right to right to treasure your memories.
Memories are one of the best legacies that exist after the death of someone loved. You will always remember. Instead of ignoring your memories, find others with whom you can share them.

10. You have the right to move toward your grief and heal.
Reconciling your grief will not happen quickly. Remember, grief is a process, not an event. Be patient and tolerant with yourself and avoid people who are impatient and intolerant with you. Neither you nor those around you must forget that the death of someone loved changes your life forever.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Our Boys at the Beach



I took this picture at the Provincial Park near our cottage. Inspired by the one and only, Carly Dudley, of course.

Nicholas was with us...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

One Year Ago....

One year ago today I was 19 weeks pregnant with our Nicholas.

One year ago today the doctors were prepping me for surgery to remove a large cyst from my ovary.

One year ago today we were terrified that I may die.... as well as our precious boy.

One year ago today I was so sick I didn't know which way was up.

One year ago today I cried and cried on the operating table begging the nurses to save my baby.

One year ago today was (as it turned out) the beginning of the end for our beautiful baby boy.

November 7, 2008 was when I gave birth to Nicholas and my husband and I were lucky enough to hold him and love him for a few unforgettable hours, but when I think back to all of the horrifying events that led to that day I almost always come back to July 22, 2008 - when I fell to the floor in more pain than imaginable, clutching my belly in fierce protection. For 15+ weeks following that incident we thought our baby was just fine. That he was oblivious to all of mommy's pain. We were so grateful for that. Then we were given the devastating blow.... that his brain hadn't formed properly - most likely from the severe and sudden loss of my blood before and after surgery.

I deprived my baby from the necessary blood he needed to survive and thrive....

So, that is why I consider this day, one year ago today, the day our world began to fall apart.

We love you Bella... so much.

Sleep well, Angel.

xo

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Off Again...


Hi Girls,

We are off again to the cottage. Looks like the weather may actually cooperate for the next couple of days so the kids are looking forward to swimming, swimming, swimming!

I will be working away on all your Angel Wings.

Please remember to send requests for Wings for your Angels my way! lcreeves3@hotmail.com

Lots of love.... I will be checking in Tues/Wed next week.

Lea xo

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Some news...


So....... we have some news to share.

We are expecting again. I am 14 weeks along in this new journey.

I knew that I was going to have to (and want to) announce this new pregnancy to all of you, but, believe me, I have struggled with when and how. I am so afraid of losing some of my trusted and loyal supporters. I do understand however, that it may be too difficult for some of you to continue following my story. I will be sad to see you go, but I will not blame you for protecting yourselves - that's all we can do.

Nicholas' Touch is dedicated to Nicholas, his memory and the road we are traveling as we struggle to live life without him. I promise you that it will stay that way. I will not be documenting this new pregnancy on Nicholas' Touch, rather, I am thinking of creating another blog to honor this new life (will keep you posted).

Needless to say, we are extremely terrified..... but also very hopeful. Adding to our family has always been in the plan for us. After we lost Nicholas having another baby was the absolute last thing on our minds. I don't know how many times I have said "how can we do this again?" which was always followed by "how can we not?" We feel we have so much more love to give and are truly content with our decision to bring a new baby brother or sister home for Evan, Kyle and Nicholas.

And so we have been miraculously blessed again. I think it was Inanna who alluded to a Rainbow Baby being like the rainbow after the storm. That analogy has stuck with me, not because Nicholas was a "storm", but because our life since losing him has definitely compared to a horrific storm. I am just now starting to see some colour in our world again... rainbow colours.

I can literally feel Nicholas' love surround us as we embark on this new adventure, a continuation of our life long journey without him here with us. It's going to be a tough, emotional road, but I am confident that with Nicholas' guidance we will all make it.... and smile again.

Thank you all for understanding. I sincerely hope not to offend or upset anyone.

I leave you with this poem tonight. I found it quite a while ago on my travels....


A Different Child

A different child,
People notice.

There's a special glow around you.
You grow
Surrounded by love,
Never doubting you are wanted;

Only look at the pride and joy
in your mother and father's eyes.

And if sometimes
Between the smiles
There's a trace of tears,
One day
You'll understand.

You'll understand
There was once another child
A different child
Who was in their hopes and dreams.

That child will never outgrow the baby clothes
That child will never keep them up at night
In fact, that child will never be any trouble at all.
Except sometimes, in a silent moment,
When mother and father miss so much
That different child.

May hope and love wrap you warmly
And may you learn the lesson forever
How infinitely precious
How infinitely fragile
Is this life on earth

One day, as a young man or woman
You may see another mother's tears
Another father's silent grief
Then you, and you alone
Will understand
And offer the greatest comfort.

When all hope seems lost,
You will tell them
With great compassion,
"I know how you feel.
I'm only here
Because my mother tried again."

-Author Unknown

The Magnitude of Our Grief

Devon had this excerpt on her blog today. It is from one of her support group meetings. I think it speaks volumes.

xo

"I want you to try to imagine the worst thing in the world - that your beloved child died. Now imagine that every single thing that used to give you joy and pleasure turns into hurt and despair overnight. Not a gradual thing but going from pleasure to hurt, from happiness to sadness, from peace to no peace, changing overnight. Everything you loved now hurts like hell.

A part of you does not exist anymore and it is scary as hell. That is why they say the loss of a child is like no other loss. You cannot compare it to another loss. With other losses you grieve and you are of course sad but when your child dies...a part of you ceases to exist. It's gone, just like that. No warning. Just gone. And the life that you knew, the things you always felt, the things in your life that made sense, that you held on to, that make up who you are - are gone!

That is why when parents who have lost children hear, "I want the old you back," "It's been a year, don't you feel better yet?," You are doing this to yourself, you're making it harder on yourself," "Grief can become a selfish thing you know." we can only shake our and heads and feel sadness and hopelessness because there is no way our lives will ever be like it was when our child was alive. No wonder bereaved parents isolate themselves. We are just trying to hold on.

Please do not tell me how I should feel or that I am holding on to this or that my family/friends must be tired of watching me go through this because if you haven't lost a beloved child of yours, you haven't got a clue. Now when you hear these word, "The presence of his absence is everywhere" will you finally understand?"

~ The Grief Blog, Louise and Diana

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Angel Wings - Memorial Boutique

Our Nicholas


In the difficult weeks following Nicholas' death a very dear girlfriend gave me a pair of Angel Wings in memory of our sweet boy. They now hang over his picture and footprint frame... I love to look at them.

I have attempted to re-create the Angel Wings to honor some of my most loyal supporters and their Angel babies. More to come...

If you would like a copy emailed directly to you, please let me know and send your email address to: lcreeves3@hotmail.com. I would also love to send you the original via snail mail if you like.

Love you all....xx

***********

The Angel Wings have become a very popular item! It warms my heart to know that I can bring a little bit of light into someone else's day.

I have no intention of charging for the Wings, they are a true gift from my heart to yours. They are a gift to honor our beautiful babes. A simple reminder that we have our very own Guardian Angels watching over us.

Having said that, because the Wings have become so popular the supplies and postage are adding up. If anyone would like to contribute in any way to this heartfelt initiative, please let me know. I would love to be able to keep sending them out.... our babies deserve it.

Contact - lcreeves3@hotmail.com

Thank you all..... love always,
Lea


**********
Bree's Butterfly

Barbara's Boy

Monique's Angel

Margaret's Sweet Boy

Lindsay's Sweetheart

Courtney's Boys


Emily's Little Girl


M's Boy

Christy's Babies

Amy's Love

J's Baby Girl

Monica's Boys

K's Angel

N's Precious Boy

C's Baby Girl

Sally's Angel

Carly's Christian

Angie's Sweet Girl

Bir's Son

Celia's Sweet Baby Boy

Holly's Angel Boy

Emalee's Angel Boy

JenJen's Lily

Donna's Babe

Nan & Mike's Precious Triplets

Inanna's Love

Tim and Cynthia's Angel

Kate's Little Girl

Carly K's Tiny Angel

Jus & Kat's Precious Boy

I Held An Angel's Angel

Ya Ya's Babes


Jaquelyn's Baby Boy

Erika's Angel Twins

Catherine's Sweetheart

Rachael's Alice Buttons

Debbie's Angel

Lisa's Angel

Beth's Baby Girl

Mary's Boy

Alliecat's Sunshine

Mirne's Angel Babies

Anna's Little Girl

For Ezra's Mommy

Sarah's Boys

Paige's Blessing

Heather's Angel

Devon's Boys

Holly's Baby Girl

Angel Baby, Abram

Jamie's Angel Girl

For Reese's Mommy

Angela's Ella

Tracey's Flower

Emily's Precious Boy

Shane and Carrisa's Strong Little Girl

Ebe's Baby Boy

Jodi's Little Girl

Sky's Angel

For Freja's Mommy

Ashley's Sweetheart

Fiona's Bailey

Laura's Angel Boy

Erin's Boy

For Caitlin's Mommy

Jenn's Angel Boy

Sarita's Baby Girl

Jennifer's Timothy

For Kai's Mommy

For Jacob and Joshua's Mommy

Juanita's Little Girl

Carla's Boy

Cheryl's Sweet One

Stephanie's Angel

Steph's Triplets